May 9, 2005 – NanoCarrier Co., a Japanese firm specializing in nanoparticle drug delivery systems, has entered into an agreement with Debiopharm S.A. of Switzerland to jointly develop a new targeted drug therapy. Under the agreement, Debiopharm will develop a new cancer-fighting agent by utilizing the Japanese firm’s nanotechnology. Specifically, the Swiss firm will encapsulate dahaplatin, an anticancer drug, in nanoparticles called micelles developed by NanoCarrier.
A micelle has a hydrophilic outer shell and a hydrophobic inner core. The anticancer drug will be entrapped in the inner core, and slowly released when the micelle reach the tumors, thus pinpointing the delivery of the drug. The company reports that the Medicelle delivery system, a NanoCarrier property, allows administration of anticancer drugs in a way that has fewer side effects on patients, as doctors can use the smaller amount of drugs than they would in conventional therapies.
NanoCarrier will receive cash milestone payments on certain development stages, as well as royalty payments when the product is marketed.